Diamond Quantum Memory Beats Record

It holds a quantum bit long enough for real computation

3 min read

7 June 2012—A new type of memory could give the emerging field of quantum computing a much-needed boost. Scientists at Harvard University say they’ve developed a solid-state, room-temperature quantum memory that can hold information longer than one second. The memory records a quantum property called spin on the nucleus of an atom inside a diamond. Earlier solid-state nuclear-spin-based memories would lose their data after only milliseconds unless cryogenically cooled. The research is being reported in this week’s issue of the journal Science.  

For practical quantum computers—experimental machines that aim to solve problems beyond the reach of ordinary computers by exploiting some of the stranger rules of quantum mechanics—it is essential to have quantum memories that last long enough to process information and churn out answers. Physicists think that the needed time frame is about one second.

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Why Functional Programming Should Be the Future of Software Development

It’s hard to learn, but your code will produce fewer nasty surprises

11 min read
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A plate of spaghetti made from code
Shira Inbar
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You’d expectthe longest and most costly phase in the lifecycle of a software product to be the initial development of the system, when all those great features are first imagined and then created. In fact, the hardest part comes later, during the maintenance phase. That’s when programmers pay the price for the shortcuts they took during development.

So why did they take shortcuts? Maybe they didn’t realize that they were cutting any corners. Only when their code was deployed and exercised by a lot of users did its hidden flaws come to light. And maybe the developers were rushed. Time-to-market pressures would almost guarantee that their software will contain more bugs than it would otherwise.

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